Showing posts from 2015

Scarlet Guard Mission #2

If you've read my blog at all, you know I love Red Queen. I can't wait for the story to continue. Check out this new quote from the sequel, Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard:

Get to know me....

....Or "Things I forgot to mention to my #TBTBSanta"

I realized that my e-mail for The Broke and The Bookish's Secret Santa was not very informative. So, for my Secret Santa, if you haven't started shopping here are some things you may want to know about me (if you have started I'm sure I'll love what you got). For everyone else, enjoy getting to know me a little better.

Christmas is my absolute favorite time of year. I started listening to Christmas music before Halloween. It puts me in my happy place.I LOVE SOCKS. Seriously. I get socks for Christmas every year. I'm basically Dobby.By the way, I'm a Hufflepuff. With Ravenclaw tendencies. I guess you can call me a Huffleclaw, or a Ravenpuff (that sounds fun).I don't drink coffee, but I love hot chocolate. You can never have too many cute mugs.I don't think I gave you my Goodreads name. You can find me here.'Once Upon A Time' is my FAVE show. I may have told you that. I can't rememb…

Hey Y'all!

So, today I went to YALLFEST for the first time and I need to tell y'all about it because I don't have any bookish people in my real life. YALLFEST is a young adult book festival held in Charleston, SC. 60 YA authors descend upon the city for panels and signings and awesomeness. You can find out more about it here:

The only unfortunate thing about YALLFEST is there is NO possible way to get to all of the signings and all of the panels that you want to (unless, of course, McGonagall gave you a time turner. In that case, you're gonna have to share it with me next year.) So, I went to 1 panel, got 2 arcs, and went to 3 signings and got lots of bookish buttons.

Victoria Aveyard Signing

I got my copy of Red Queen signed!! This signing was at the top of my list. This has been my favorite book so far this year and I'm so excited that I got it signed. I also got a cute little Victoria Aveyard button.

Epic Reads was also having a special event for the sequel, Glass Sword. The i…

Review: The Lost Heiress by Roseanna M. White

Are you looking for a clean romance with a healthy dose of mystery? Well, I have just the book for you.

The Lost Heiress
Roseanna M. White

5 out of 5 stars!

Elements of The Lost Heiress reminded me of other stories I have read. Particularly, the East of the Sun Series (Tomorrow's Treasure,Today's Embrace, and Today's Embrace) by Linda Lee Chaikin, The Grand Tour Series (Glamorous Illusions, Grave Consequences, and Glittering Promises) by Lisa T. Bergren, and The House in Grosvenor Square by Linore Rose Burkard. Now, you may not like a book that reminds you of other books you've read, but these are some of my favorites so I'm okay with being reminded of them. I love a good Anastasia-esque story where the heroine is plopped into a world she is unaccustomed to. White's characters are well-developed and make this an entirely new story even though there are familiar elements. Flaws and quirks make the characters feel real. This is definitely one of my favorite books of…

Fangirling: "Once Upon a Time" season premiere

Tonight marks the beginning of season five of ABC's Once Upon A Time. This has been my favorite show since the night it all began. My friends just don't understand my love for this show. That makes it kinda awkward when I start fangirling. So, I have decided I'm going to fangirl on my blog because I can't contain it. I know this is a book blog, but it's my blog and I can do what I want. Besides, the show is based on fairy tales. That's book related.

If you've never watched OUAT, I suggest hopping on Netflix and starting at the beginning. It's the only way you're really going to know what in the world is happening.

Without further ado, here are some thoughts I had while watching the season premiere. SPOILERS. Obviously.

Little Emma is so cute. And so heartbreaking. I'd adopt little Emma. Is that movie usher Lancelot? How the heck did Lancelot end up in a movie theater in Minnesota??? And why is he being so creepy?Ooh, Hook and Regina are going to…

Oh, blogger, where art thou?

Where, oh where, have I been?

The simple answer: Hiding under my invisibility cloak.

The long answer: I'm working in two different libraries and also taking graduate classes. My plate is a little full, to say the least. Something had to give and that something has been reading for fun (and consequently, blogging). However, now that I've got all that under control,  I'm hoping to post somewhat regularly (meaning once or twice a month).

So what's on my bookshelf?

The Lost Heiress
by Roseanna M. White

This is the first book in her Ladies of the Manor series. Roseanna wrote the first version of this story when she was thirteen!!

 by Dina Sleiman

This is the second book in her Valiant Hearts series. Book 1, Dauntless, was amazing (read my review) and I cannot wait to read Chivalrous.

Red, White, and Blue Books for You!!

Happy Independence Day!!! I hope y'all are all having an awesome weekend!

In honor of the Holiday I've decided to try a Red, White, and Blue themed post. Here it goes:

The Red Report

I bought myself a book for Valentine's Day and haven't had the chance (i.e. I haven't been in the right mood) to read it. Imagine my delight when this novel appeared on my summer reading list for class! Any guesses as to what novel I'm talking about? Okay, I'll tell you: Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard.
If you follow any bloggers on twitter then you've probably heard about Red Queen. With all the hype, I was worried it wouldn't live up to expectations. BUT IT DID.

What's it about? 
There is a land that is divided by blood: Silver and Red. The Silver blooded families all have extraordinary abilities: super speed, strength, the ability to manipulate elements, or get inside people's heads, etc. Naturally, with such power, they rule the common Red blooded people. 
Mare is …

Review, Review: Will Grayson, Will Grayson

Will Grayson, Will Grayson

by John Green and David Levithan  

 Let me preface this by saying that this is not a novel I would have ever picked up on my own. The class I am taking this summer requires a LGBTQ novel and this was one of the options. Will Grayson, Will Grayson is the story of two boys named Will Grayson (I bet you didn't see that one coming!). One Will is straight, the other is gay. This is the story of how they meet, but even more than that it is the story of Tiny Cooper who is best friends with Will and is in love with the other Will.

* * * * * My rating: 1 star

If I didn't have to read this for school I never would have made it past the second chapter. There is SO MUCH PROFANITY.  I understand that it is written to appeal to teens (which I am not) and therefore written in a way that teens speak. I know you can't walk down a public high school hallway without hearing profanity. I know it is commonplace in today's culture. That doesn't mean I have t…

Why do I do that???

My fellow booknerds, I have a confession to make:  When I get about a quarter of the way through a novel I skip ahead and read the last few pages. Or occasionally I'll flip to a random place in the novel and read a few paragraphs.
This drives my brother nuts when he catches me doing it. If I'm honest, sometimes it drives me a little nuts too. If I'm reading a love story or something along those lines then peeking at the end doesn't make much of a difference. Those stories are often predictable. I know who is going to end up coupled together, so if I peek at their "happily ever after" during a particularly slow section then who cares?  The problem comes when I'm reading a mystery or fantasy. Actually, it's an issue when I read anything with a plot twist. I spoil the ending for myself. I know some major plot twist is going to happen so I can't be shocked or dismayed when it does. Why do I do this???? And why can't I stop? I don't have any an…

Reading Reflection

Today's post is going to be a little different. I'm not writing a review, per se, but more of a reflection. A written rumination. A slow meditation. Because that's what this book requires. It demands introspection. It begs for discussion.

What book did I read that insists upon so much?

Thirteen Reasons Why 
by Jay Asher

     If you're a big YA reader then you've probably heard of Thirteen Reasons Why. I had not even though it has been out for a while. My YA reading is typically limited to historical or dystopian novels. The first reading assignment for my YA class is realistic fiction. There were choices like The Fault in Our Stars or  Eleanor and Park, but once I read the summary of Thirteen Reasons Why I just couldn't shake it. This story is about a boy named Clay who receives a shoebox full of tapes and a map with red stars. These tapes were recorded by his crush Hannah Baker documenting thirteen reasons why she killed herself. These tapes were to be passed a…

Spine Stories

Bonjour Book Nerds!
I was browsing my usual blogs when I was stopped in my tracks by a post on The Artist Librarian's blog. She had a picture of some "book spine poetry" for a contest. The idea is simple: use book titles to create a "poem". It could tell a story or just be similar titles or even just spines with similar colors. I decided to give it a shot. Only my first one tries to tell a story. The rest are just similar titles. I got a little carried away and now my floor is littered with books. Take a look and then share your own poetry!
Heart at Sea
Can you keep a secret?

Always a Bride
Working Girls
Let Me Introduce the Daughter of the House
All In a Day
As the Seasons Go

Review: Tiffany Girl by Deeanne Gist

Tiffany Girl

Deeanne Gist

My rating: 4 & 1/2 Tiffany Lamps

About the book: Mr. Louis Comfort Tiffany, son of the famous jeweler, has been commissioned to create stained glass windows for a chapel at the Chicago World's Fair. The male glass cutters and other workers decide this is the perfect time to strike. They want higher wages and fewer hours and they know Mr. Tiffany has a deadline to get these windows done. Well, Mr. Tiffany isn't about to play their game and hires female art students to tackle the windows. These ladies are "Tiffany Girls". Among them is Flossie Jayne. Flossie loves to paint. When her father loses her art school tuition by betting on horses, Flossie decides to move out and become a "New Woman". Unfortunately, Flossie is young and naive. She just wants to be able to keep her own money. Flossie doesn't have a clue how the world works, what it truly means to be a "New Woman", or what it could cost her .

* * * * *
 My though…

Waiting on Tiffany

My first semester of graduate school is quickly winding down. I have a number of projects due within the next week that I should be working on. What am I actually doing? I am (not so) patiently waiting on my copy of Tiffany Girl by Deeanne Gist to arrive in the mail. She is one of my FAVORITE authors. I love her historical stories. Maid to Match is my absolute favorite. It is set in the Biltmore House (if you haven't visited Biltmore then put it on your bucket list). The Vanderbilts were American nobility. If you like Downton Abbey, then I think you'll Maid to Match.
    As part of her Launch Team I was able to preview the first few chapters--but I haven't read them yet. I can hear you shouting, "Are you crazy?!?" That's debatable, but the way I see it, it would be far worse torture to read the preview and then still have to wait for the rest of the book.

So what is Tiffany Girl about? I'm so glad you asked. Here's the book blurb:
As preparation…

Review: Dauntless by Dina Sleiman

If you're looking for a book about a faction, well, I hate to burst your bubble but this isn't it.

by Dina Sleiman

Action? Check.
Romance? Check.
Kick-butt heroine? CHECK.

My rating: 5 out of 5 bows and arrows

* * * * *
About the story:  They never planned on becoming a band of thieves, but how else can the orphans of Ellsworth survive?  In this medieval tale, Merry and her "men" take a page out of Robin Hood's (or Robyn of the Hode) playbook and rob from the rich to feed the poor.  They just happen to be the poor.  After two years they've built quite a reputation as The Ghosts of Farthingale Forest.  But happens when someone sets out to track down these ghosts?  Will Merry and her men ever be safe?  Can they ever come out of hiding?

* * * * *
"Stealth. Anonymity. Restraint. These are our allies. These three we shall never betray."
My thoughts: This book wasn't on my radar.  Nowhere near it in fact.  I hadn't heard of the book or the aut…

Do you hear what I hear?


What do y'all think of audiobooks?  I listened to my first one this weekend and I gotta say, I'm not really a fan.  Amazon's Audible lets you get your first audiobook for free. So I decided to give it a shot and got Matched by Ally Condie.  I liked that I could listen to the story while washing dishes and folding laundry.  However, it was all to easy to space out.  I had to go back and replay pieces multiple times.  For me, it was so much harder to picture the characters in my head while listening to the audiobook.  The story never quite turned into a movie in my head.  Was it the story itself or was it because I was listening instead of reading?
     Also, Matched had music playing randomly in the background in two or three chapters.  I wouldn't have minded the music if it was all the way through, like a movie soundtrack.  However, just have music abruptly play for a few minutes threw me off.  I don't know if the music was supposed to be a cue that I wa…

Review: Matched by Ally Condie

Matched by Ally Condie

My rating: 2 stars

Matched is not a match for me.

About the story: Welcome to a world where The Society decides everything, where there is a rule for everything.  The Society decides where you live, what you wear, where you work, and what you eat.  You can't share your food.  You can't run in public,  And don't even think about breaking the rules.  Of course, everything The Society does is to create an optimal life for citizens.  They've learned the optimal age to die is 80.  The optimal age to meet your match is 17.  The Society uses all of the data that is gathered on you to determine your match.  It's all probability and statistics.  Nothing can go wrong.  The Society doesn't make mistakes.  So what happens when they do?  What happens when Cassia is matched with two boys?  Will everything she knows to be good and right unravel?

* * * * *
My thoughts:  Well booknerds, I really thought I would like this one.  The covers call out to me every …

Love Is In the Books...

I haven't has a lot of spare time for reading/review/blogging lately (thanks grad school!), but I thought that I would do a post in honor of Valentine's Day.

Without further ado, here are my Top 5 Book Couples:

5) Couple: Katie O'Connor and Luke McGee
    Book: A Hope Undaunted by Julie Lessman
    Setting: Boston, 1920s

  Let me just start by saying if you plan on reading Julie's novels do yourself a favor and start at the beginning.  Katie O'Connor and Luke McGee are both minor characters in the The Daughters of Boston series and the other two books in the Winds of Change series, but A Hope Undaunted is their story.  Katie has already decided that she is going to marry her perfect boyfriend Jack and become a lawyer (rare for ladies in those days).  Luke never thought Katie would actually fall for him, after all, she calls him the "King of Misery".  But when Katie's father punishes her by making Katie spend her summer at Luke's law firm everything…

Review: The Fairest Beauty by Melanie Dickerson

My rating: 3 & 1/2 stars out of 5
* * * * * About the Story:The Fairest Beauty by Melanie Dickerson is a retelling of Snow White set in medieval Germany.  Sophie is a sixteen year old orphan who works as a scullery maid for an evil Duchess.  The Duchess gets no small amount of pleasure out of torturing Sophie.  Sophie knows she must escape...soon.  A young man named Gabe shows up claiming that Sophie is actually a Duke's daughter and engaged to Gabe's brother.  Can she trust him?  Is he the answer to her prayers?  And how is she supposed to protect her heart?
* * * * * My thoughts:  It hurts me to give this book such a low rating.  It really is a fine book, one that I would call a true retelling.  It has all of the key elements that you would expect in a Snow White story-- a huntsman, seven strange men, a poisoned apple, etc.  My problem, and the reason that I gave this book a lower rating, is that I had no qualms with putting this book down.  I love books where I get to the…

Review: Beyond All Dreams by Elizabeth Camden

My rating:  4 & 1/2 stars
About the story:  It's 1897 and Anna O'Brien is a map librarian at the Library of Congress.  She leads a quiet life fulfilling research requests from members of quiet.  Anna loves order and finding answers.  When she finds an error in a Navy report she seeks to get it rectified right away.  The Navy adamantly objects to fixing an error in a fifteen year old report.  Their stubbornness only fuels Anna's determination and she recruits her lifelong best friend Neville to help solve the mystery.  She also recruits Luke Callahan, a young congressman from Maine whose political career has recently been a roller coaster ride.  Can he help Anna?  Will their dreams be shattered in the process?

* * * * *
My review: I was so excited to read this story.  I love Elizabeth Camden's novels and I have a soft spot for stories that feature librarians (after all, I do hope to be a librarian soon).  This fictional glimpse into the Library of Congress and the Cap…

My Excuses to Read More in 2015

Okay, the time has come for me to actually commit to a challenge (or three).  I decided to put them all in the same post instead of making you suffer through a series of posts, so it may be a long one.

* * * * *

Let's start with the Goodreads Challenge.  It's the generic challenge that will encompass everything I read this year.  I'm challenging myself to read 40 books this year.  With a full time job and graduate school (and possibly an additional part time job) it will be definitely be a challenge but I tend to aim high.  This will also require me to actually enter the dates that I read books.  I didn't really do that last year so I have no idea how many books I read in 2014.
* * * * *

Next up, The Show Your Shelves Some Love Challenge.  This one is hosted by Chapter Break and Terri at 2nd Run Reviews.  The premise is simple.  We all have a backlog of TBR books, right?  We buy them and then for whatever reason they just end up on the shelf, under a pile of books that w…